The parents of three hemophiliacs applied Tuesday to have their sons attend school 50 miles from their hometown of Arcadia, where the boys were shunned because they carry the AIDS virus.
“They have formally asked that the children be considered for admission to Sarasota schools,” said Judy Kavanaugh, attorney for the family of Louise and Clifford Ray.
Sarasota recently adopted a policy of allowing AIDS-exposed children into public schools unless it poses a medical risk to themselves or others.
Evaluation of the Ray case will take five to 20 days, Kavanaugh said.
Although Sarasota and Arcadia are not far apart geographically, there is a wide gap in their attitudes toward schoolchildren with the acquired immune deficiency syndrome virus.
Arcadia schools have no policy on the issue, and one parents’ group there advocates isolation of such pupils. Sarasota school officials have decided that AIDS-infected children should be taught at school.
The Rays have been in seclusion in the Sarasota area since a fire of suspicious origin destroyed their home in Arcadia on Aug. 28.
Doctors believe that their sons, Ricky, Robert and Randy, ages 8, 9 and 10, were exposed to the AIDS virus through contaminated plasma products used as blood-clotting agents.